It’s not possible to talk too much about these programmes. They are just amazing, and a joy to be part of in action. Led by Bernie Shakeshaft up in Armidale doing some of the best youth work stuff around. Two Projects: PawsUp (Training dogs and competing at shows)
(a viable commercial welding shed) underway for some long time now, and a third programme AgLads (rural employment matching needs to interests to training).
Something like 95% completion of TAFE or Green cards…accredited programmes. Lots of parts to what happens: the circle work with the boys before things get started; the boys talking about how their day is, working out what each person needs that day; making sure the older boys take on a mentor/leadership role; talking about what is happening that day (the shed, travel, a show…) and working out what is expected of each person and how that will be reached…
This is some of what the boys had to say about the success of the programmes:
‘come out better for it
willing to look for work
better team work/communication skills
give fuck about each other
old whitefellas come up to us down the street and ask do ya do dog/welding shit
community comes out better. No one ever says you can’t go dog jumping etc
proud of what boys make down there’
Remarkable stuff. Good onya boys…good onya Bernie.